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The Adult - Alien in the Delta

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The Adult - Alien in the Delta in the third and last book in the series. (Following are excerpts from the book.)

Off in the distance, you could hear the sound of automatic weapons firing late into the night. It reminded me of Fourth of July firecrackers all going off at the same time. The noise was deafening. Silence for a few minutes, and it would start all over again. Each subsequent time, it would seem to get louder. That is where the similarity with the Fourth of July ended.

Detroit was burning, and there weren’t enough policemen, firemen, or equipment to put out all of the fires and arrest all of the looters. We heard the sound of fire trucks and police sirens and someone speaking on loudspeakers. The smell of smoke from the fires that had been set all over the city left you wondering how long it would be before the worst of the riots would reach our side of town.

Things had gotten so out of control, and the Detroit police could not contain the riots. The Michigan National Guard had been activated but wasn’t able to make a difference. There was some talk of calling up reserve military personnel. When the riots broke out in July of 1967, my greatest fear was that I would be called up for active military duty as a reservist. I was eligible to be called until November 1967, two years from the date of my discharge from the US Air Force.

The mayor of Detroit asked for help from the federal government. The Eighty-second Airborne Division soldiers were sent to Detroit to stop the rioting; the same group of soldiers who had been fighting in Vietnam. It was dangerous, scary, and unbelievable. These soldiers patrolled every street in Detroit.

I had spent four years in the US Air Force, and during that time I hadn’t seen any combat, but back in the city of Detroit, I was living in a combat zone. As the soldiers walked past our houses, we offered them something cold to drink. They had been told not to get into discussions with the citizens and to keep moving.

The entire city was under a curfew. Everyone was asked to stay put until further notice. You were allowed to go places in the daytime, but you could not travel after dark. Things didn’t calm down for a solid week. Not before forty-three deaths, eleven hundred injuries, and over seven thousand arrests had occurred.

During Thankful’s four year stay in the Air Forces in Germany, he learned to speak the language and met his future wife. She joins him in Detroit three months after he returns. Thankful was able to obtain a job immediately working at the Ford Motor Company with the help of his brother who also worked there. They moved into an apartment a block away from his brother’s house. Those times were especially difficult for his new bride because she could not speak English. Thankful would call her from the job on each break to make sure she was okay and to make her feel safe and not so alone.

The Child is the first book in the Alien in the Delta (3 Book Series). It highlights the life of a boy from the age of six until he graduates from high school at age seventeen. During that time he discovers music, girls, sex, learns to dance, and becomes self-aware.

The Soldier is the second book in the series. Thankful Strother spent four years in the United States Air Force. He was stationed in Germany where he learned to speak German, met his future wife and traveled throughout Europe.

The Adult - Alien in the Delta is the third book in the series. Thankful returns from Germany get married settling in Detroit starts a family and purchases their first house. He goes to work in the automotive industry while attending school learning computer programming. After completing school enters the corporate world and become a successful corporate sales manager and later real estate investor.

Alien in the Delta by Thankful Strother is a memoir filled with excitement, humor, and 1960 history that's enjoyable to read. You are taken back in time allowing you to compare some aspects of the deep-south fifty years ago to today; on a journey that highlights the life experiences of a boy from the age of six through manhood. His escape from the Delta not realized until he traveled abroad. He shares with you his intimate feeling, exposing you to a variety of emotions including fear, sadness, happiness, and amusement.

Alien in the Delta available in paperback online and at most book stores and also offered as a (3 Book) Series that highlights different periods in the author's life; The Child, The Soldier, and The Adult.


Thankful Strother born at Grand Lake, Arkansas in 1943, graduated from high school in 1961 and joined the US Air Force Stationed in Germany for four years where he learned to speak German and met his wife, Barbara. They married in 1966 have two adult children and live in California.

After a thirty-five-year career in computers and telecommunications, retiring in 2003, he accomplished a goal to write a book about his early life. Alien in the Delta is that book.

The author explains how he became Thankful Strother. Through research into his family’s genealogy, he discovered that Strother was the real family last name. John, his grandfather, changed the spelling of the last name because he got into trouble with the law.

His great-great grandfather’s first name was Thankful. In his honor and as a testimony to his life’s experiences, he is now Thankful Strother.

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